Kings X - Ogre Tones - 2005 - InsideOut Music America
1. Alone 2.Stay 3.Hurricane 4.Fly 5.If 6.Bebop 7.Honesty 8.Open My Eyes 9.Freedom 10.Get Away 11.Sooner Or Later 12.Mudd 13.Bam
The new King’s X release “Ogre Tones” comes to us courtesy of the InsideOut Music label. Prior to this the band was associated with Metal Blade Records and while I am not sure of the reason behind the change it is nice to see the group go to another quality label. I feel that the music of Kings X is a little better suited to a label like InsideOut now, since most of the Metal Blade artist roster has become very heavy stuff. It might have had them lost in the shuffle accidentally. On “Ogre Tones” the band gives us a great piece of music with lots of bluesy riffs and harmony vocals. The trio has always had their roots in these musical principles but on the new CD is more apparent than on the last studio effort. They are a welcome addition to the new label with this type of music I am certain. Doug Pinnick still has the soulful voice that he is best known for; soft and subtle at time, and at others reaching a crescendo. Ty Tabors guitar work is very nice and clean on the release while Jerry Gaskills drumming is as solid as it ever was. The great factor in a band like King’s X was their ability to all sing in such great harmony with each other. From the opening track of “Alone”, “Hurricane” and “Fly” you can tell that the group has not lost an ounce of their vocal prowess and sound better than ever.
While most of the record holds this bluesy feel there are a couple of heavier numbers such as “Bebop” and “Open My Eyes”. Those totally serve the need for the brand of Hard Rock that the band can deliver. Those that enjoy ballads will definitely enjoy “If” and “Honesty”. Ty Tabor does an excellent job at singing the lead on “Honesty” with only an acoustic guitar to accompany him. The longest track on the record is “Sooner Or Later” and it is a heady, trippy piece that has a touch of Pink Floyd to it musically. This CD appealed to me very quickly in the sense that it reminded so much of the music the band delivered on releases such as “Out Of The Silent Planet” and “Faith, Hope, Love".
The only downside is the CD’s length, it is very short running a little over 35 minutes if I calculated correctly. The last track “Bam” I was unable to understand and felt it was better to have included an extra song than some difficult to understand talking piece. I admit to being a casual listener with a handful of favorite tracks in the catalog, but this release clearly fills the need for any fan new or old.
--Ken Pierce 10.01.05
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